Academic achievements was the theme of the day for St. Augustine Catholic School students during their awards ceremony Oct. 23.
Parents, teachers and administrators converged on the school to celebrate students’ accomplishments with a list of recipients that just seemed to keep on going. Principal Kevin Prediger is most proud of the quality of accomplishments by students.
“We tried to develop a program that was very well-rounded, that didn’t just focus on the highest academic achievement all of the time and I think the community has supported that,” said Prediger in an interview.
Indeed, achievements not only include academic excellence for students in each grade but also in technology, physical education and community service awards such as the Pope John Paul II Academic Excellence Award, which includes a certain level of community involvement.
Also included in the awards was the St. Claude Award, which recognizes artistic achievement, and the St. Theresa Award, awarded to a graduating student involved in a mentoring program.
“You’ll see a lot of different types of awards sponsored by a lot of different members of the community,” said Prediger.
Students who excelled in trades or other skills had their chance at awards as well. One thing administrators have done, said Prediger, is set the bar high but challenged all students to reach that point, rather than create an overly competitive process.
“We’re not always in competition with each other all of the time,” he explained.
That being said, Prediger added that there are certain instances where a student’s achievement must be recognized. “It’s very well-rounded.”
He said the support of members of the community helps ensure the program goes well.
During the ceremony superintendent Troy Davies for St. Thomas Aquinas Roman Catholic Schools, said that while the work can be a challenge, the achievements should be honoured. “We are proud of your continued accomplishments.”
Ponoka trustee Dan Svitich added his thoughts, suggesting students’ hard work is setting them up to be strong community leaders.
“Everyone who steps up on this stage today is someone very special,” said Svitich.
Also among the awards was the Premier’s Citizenship award, for outstanding contributions to the school; the Knights of Columbus Award, for contributions to the school, community and parish and the Governor General’s Medal, for a student with the highest standing.